Rich Igbo culture displayed at Yam Festival

BY: Kofi Duah
Eze Samuel Ekezie, Igbo King of Sempe Traditional Area, (arrowed) surrounded by other chiefs
Eze Samuel Ekezie, Igbo King of Sempe Traditional Area, (arrowed) surrounded by other chiefs

It was a rich display of Igbo Culture at the Dansoman Keep Fit club recently when Igbo natives living in Ghana joined their chief, Eze Samuel Ekezie, Igbo King of Sempe Traditional Area, to celebrate five years of his ascension to the throne.

For a moment, witnesses thought the Dansoman Park, which is home to various recreational and social events, was one of the Igbo States in Nigeria as the Igbo celebrants projected their culture in their various Isiagu traditional attires and caps.

The festival, which was on the theme: “Promoting peace and unity through culture,'' was also an occasion to celebrate the Yam festival of the people of Igbo.

Clad in Isiagu regalia with his Ofo (a traditional staff used by title chiefs and elders in Igbo) and accompanied with traditional horns such as the Okike, Ọdu-mkpalọ and Enenke, the chief arrived around 1 p.m. for the day’s activities.

Other traditional rulers and special guests took turns to greet and pay homage and also presented gifts to wish Eze well when he finally sat in state.

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As part of tradition, the chief was also presented with various species of yam, a popular staple of the people of Igbo.

In his presentation, Eze Samuel Ekezie said the festival was very important in shaping the Igbo culture, so the youth must be proud to learn and represent their culture wherever they find themselves.

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“This occasion is very significant because it brings many Igbos living in Accra and its environs together to commune and dialogue on issues, which has since enhanced the welfare and promoted a peaceful co-existence among us,” he said.

He also used the ceremony to encourage his people to participate in Nigeria’s upcoming elections next year.

Various artisans telling the rich customs of the Igbos, as well as various traditional attires and foods, were displayed for guests to have a fair knowledge of the Igbo culture.